Burnt Offerings: MOD DVD

Before we get to this week’s new releases, I’d like to draw your attention to a worthwhile documentary project on the crowd-funding site Indiegogo.  If you’re reading this column, you probably have some interest in classic Hollywood and the history of Los Angeles.  If so, check out After 68, a documentary on the rise and fall of L.A.’s historic Ambassador Hotel.

The Ambassador and its adjacent nightclub, the Cocoanut Grove, was one of the key hot spots in Los Angeles, particularly throughout the 30s and 40s.  It hosted two Academy Award ceremonies, was frequented by pretty much every major star you can think of, and was used as a filming location for everything from The Graduate to Tobe Hooper’s Toolbox Murders, which is how I was able to visit it.  [...]

This will be a quick one, updating you all on the week’s newest releases from Warner Archive, so let’s dive right on in.

The Frozen Dead (1966) – An early JET’s Most Wanted pick finally makes its official DVD debut!  Mad scientist Dana Andrews had the forethought to cryogenically freeze the heads of some of the top Nazi leaders of WWII.  Now it’s time to bring them back and get the old Third Reich going again.  Your Nazi Zombie collection isn’t complete without this one, folks.  [...]

This week’s Burnt Offerings include titles from Paramount returning to print courtesy of Warner Archive and a quartet of classics from 20th Century Fox Cinema Archives.

Let’s kick things off with the latest from the Warner Archive Collection.

WARNER ARCHIVE – NEW THIS WEEK

Going Hollywood (1933) – Marion Davies and Bing Crosby star in this musical from director Raoul Walsh.  Crosby plays a radio crooner (quite a stretch, I realize) who goes to L.A. to make his movie debut.  Davies is a schoolteacher with a crush who follows him, determined to win him over.  Evidently restraining orders weren’t around back in 1933.  [...]

First of all, my apologies for missing last week’s Burnt Offerings.  The column got swallowed up by the chaos that is San Diego Comic-Con.  At this point, the event has turned into a giant black hole centered smack dab in the middle of July that consumes everything else in its wake.

Of course, I was down there to participate in The Bits’ annual Blu-ray Producers panel and, as usual, it was a fine discussion with some of the sharpest talents in the industry.  Although they weren’t there as panelists, the team from Warner Archive was nice enough to attend in the audience and they confirmed that Peter Weir’s Fearless will indeed be one of their next Blu-ray titles.  The movie features one of Jeff Bridges’ very best performances and if you like Bridges as much as we do, you know that’s high praise indeed.  Keep your eyes peeled for an official announcement of this highly-anticipated title soon.

There isn’t a whole heck of a lot to discuss in the world of MOD this week.  So after a quick look at the week’s new releases and a handy-dandy link to this week’s review, I’m going to spend most of this week’s column looking at streaming video, that scourge of disc collectors everywhere.

WARNER ARCHIVE – NEW THIS WEEK

The Andy Hardy Film Collection, Volume 2 – The first volume of this series was released back in 2011.  This 5-disc set collects the remaining 10 films from the long-running Mickey Rooney series.  I’ll be honest, I’ve never seen an Andy Hardy movie in my life and know them only by their wholesome slice of American Pie reputation.  Even so, I’m a little confused by the seemingly random order of the films’ release.  This new set includes the first entry (1937’s A Family Affair), the last (1958’s Andy Hardy Comes Home) and eight more from the years between (Judge Hardy’s Children, Love Finds Andy Hardy, The Hardys Ride High, Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever, The Courtship Of Andy Hardy, Andy Hardy’s Double Life, Andy Hardy’s Blonde Trouble and Love Laughs At Andy Hardy).  I’m not sure why they didn’t just release these in chronological order to begin with.  Maybe the titles in the first volume are the most popular and well-known, although it seems like popularity and name recognition would be relative when it comes to the Andy Hardy series.  Anyway, you can now have your very own Hardython in your own home.

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